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The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) did not analyze the selection of the site for the Astravyets nuclear power plant (NPP) close to the Lithuanian border in Belarus, which runs counter to information provided by Belarus, which said that IAEA had found the construction site suitable. Nevertheless, the agency's report does not say anything about this.
Astravyets nuclear power plant under construction
Astravyets nuclear power plant under construction
© DELFI / Domantas Pipas

Vitalijus Auglys, director of the Pollution Prevention Department at the Environment Ministry, says IAEA did not even look at the construction site, as Belarus never asked for it.

"What I have read is that Belarus did not request for analysis of the selection of the construction site by the SEED mission, so IAEA did not go any further. Of course, they need to somehow show that they are being attacked by Lithuanians but we have already said earlier that the mission was not a full-scale one and now they're trying to put it nicely that they did something," Auglys told BNS.

The agency assessed the Astravyets NPP project design, the threats of the location and other threats, however, did not analyze the procedures of selection of the construction site.

"The Review Team assessed information provided by the Belarusian counterpart and concluded, based on a comparison between site characteristics and design parameters, that appropriate steps were followed to adequately addresses all necessary aspects of site safety and site-specific design parameters for the Belarusian NPP for relevant external hazards," IAEA SEED mission said in a report of its January inspection published on the Belarusian Energy Ministry's website.

IAEA has not published the report.

Meanwhile, the Belarusian state news agency Belta has said that all security aspects had been analyzed adequately in the selection of the location for the Astravyets utility.

Lithuania's Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius has told BNS that the SEED mission had not been conducted on full scale, accusing Belarus of selectively application of nuclear safety standards in the construction of the Astravyets nuclear power plant. In his words, Belarus has been skipping the site assessment module.

The full-scale SEED mission includes six modules. Lithuania maintains that IAEA experts had only conducted the mission under one or two modules only.

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